Sunday, August 17, 2008

Status of mystery skull a bone of contention
The status of Wairarapa's mystery skull remains in limbo, with the national coroner's office effectively saying it's no longer its problem.

In response to a Times-Age query about who now has responsibility for the skull, which has generated worldwide news media interest, Glenn Dobson, southern regional manager for the Coronial Services Unit of the Ministry of Justice, said officially the case is closed and the coroner no longer has jurisdiction over it.

The skull, believed to be that of a European woman, was found in the Ruamahanga River four years ago by Sam Tobin and has created a stir because radiocarbon tests showed it is over 300 years old.

That has attracted interest from news media around the world because Europeans were not believed to have landed in New Zealand before 1770.

Doesn't seem to be much as to how it was determined to be European, apart from a phys anth examination, and no indication what the carbon source was for the C14 test. The skull itself?